Raw sewage spills into sea at St Agnes Beach in Cornwall amid heavy rainfall

  • A large section of the sea turned brown following the sewage spill

The aftermath of a huge sewage and mud spill at St Agnes Beach in Cornwall has been captured on camera.

The video, which shows a large section of the water turning dark brown, was taken by a business owner at Trevaunance Cove in St Agnes on Sunday 30 October.

South West Water has confirmed its storm overflow in St Agnes triggered "briefly" at the weekend. It says sewage then mixed with mud, causing the discolouration.

It comes as several sewage alerts have been issued on the north coast of Cornwall.

Environmental charity Surfers Against Sewage is warning of sewage contamination at Trevaunance Cove, Mawgan Porth, Fistral North, Crantock, Trevaunance Cove, Godrevy Towans and Gwithian Beach.

A South West Water spokesperson told ITV News West Country: "While the storm overflow at St Agnes triggered briefly on Sunday 30 October following heavy rain, this was a short-duration spill and is unlikely to have caused the level of discolouration shown in the video. 

"On this occasion, we believe there were other factors which contributed to the discolouration, such as mud in the water dislodged by the heavy rain flowing into the area from a nearby stream and runoff from agricultural land."

The spokesperson said the firm will continue to increase investment in the region's infrastructure to protect the environment.

“This year the South West has seen the dramatic changes in weather patterns presented by climate change, as demonstrated in August when the region was declared in drought," the spokesperson added.

"Through these changes we are now experiencing more extreme weather patterns than ever before and this year the South West saw one of the driest and hottest years on record.

“As well as prolonged periods of extremely hot weather, we have seen heavy localised rainfall which hasn’t been able to permeate into the dry ground, meaning significant volumes run into our network, which can cause our storm overflows to trigger.”